Apple Unveils iPhone 6S And 6S Plus With 3D Touch Haptic Feedback

Apple has showcased the latest additions to their iPhone range and described the handsets as, “the most advanced smartphones in the world”. The construction utilizes aerospace-grade aluminium and the strongest glass cover in the industry. On a more cosmetic angle, there is a new rose-gold premium colour scheme. Furthermore, both handsets opt for Apple’s flagship A9 processor and the iSight camera has been upgraded to a 12-megapixel sensor. Another invention is 3D touch which detects the amount of pressure being applied to the screen and performs various functions via force sensors. This means, tapping the screen or a prolonged press provides a very different result in the latest software.

The camera also incorporates “deep trench isolation” to reproduce colours more effectively and create a vivid image. From the presentation footage, the camera quality seems excellent and a marked improvement over the 6 and 6 Plus. Apple decided to offer 4K video with the new 6S range and this has been a long overdue feature as phones like the One Plus 2 can already do this for a much lower price. Consumers often use the front-facing camera to take “selfies” and Apple has improved the sensor to 5-megapixels. This is more than ample for quick photographs but nothing to really write home about.

In terms of networking, the iPhone 6S and 6S Plus contains 23 LTE bands and a maximum WiFi speed of 866 Mbps. This makes it a great choice for people constantly travelling to a variety of countries. In a fairly cringeworthy manner, Apple announced its own Android App designed to migrate data from Android users to iOS, and suggested they are acquiring lots of ex-Android customers.

The pricing remains unchanged from the previous models and costs $199 (16GB), $299 (64GB), $399 (128GB) plus a 24 month contract on the 6S and $299 (16GB), $399 (64GB), $499 (128GB) if you decide to choose the iPhone 6S Plus. The handsets will come with the latest iOS 9 operating system and a new upgrade programme has been launched which let’s you upgrade your phone every year. Although, this is only on tariffs at a minimum of $32 per month and in Apple Stores.

Apple Unleashes New Apple TV and ‘TVOS’

Apple has unveiled the highly-anticipated updated to the Apple TV and described it as “the future of Television”. According to Apple, Apps are paramount to modernizing TV and offering consumers a huge range of content through multiple providers such as Netflix and Amazon Instant Video. With the latest Apple TV, you can use the Siri remote which supports voice commands to search your entire library of Apps and not just within each program. If you use lots of video streaming services, then this could be a real time-saver. Although the voice recognition isn’t anything new considering Amazon’s Fire HD set-top box already includes this feature.

Another interesting announcement revolves around the new, dedicated operating system for the large screen called TVOS. Rather surprisingly, Guitar Hero is coming to Apple TV and Apple appears to be cashing-in on the mobile gaming market. Although, don’t expect too many mainstream console or PC games. A rather strange demonstration involved the extremely successful indie games, Crossy Road, and the developer appeared on stage to announce an exclusive Mulitplayer mode to iOS devices.

Other games coming to Apple TV include Disney Infinity, and a new title from the creators of Rock Band. Beat Sports combines music and motion controls using the Apple TV remote. Instead of playing notes, you have to move the main character and swing a baseball bat in time with the rhythm.

The Apple TV was used to broadcast a Major League Baseball game in 1080p at 60fps and allows for multi-game watching via split screen. Another neat feature, is the huge amount of optional data overlaid on the screen. In terms of specifications, the Apple TV employs Bluetooth 5.0 and a 64-bit A8 CPU. Interestingly, the Siri remote works in any direction and doesn’t have to face the sensor. The new Apple TV utilizes 802.11ac Wifi, and a decided Ethernet port for stable connections. Currently, the Apple TV is scheduled for release in October, and will come in two variants. The 32GB model wil cost $149 while the 64GB version retails for $199.

Improved Apple Watch SDK Will Drastically Improve Third-Party Apps

It has been common knowledge that Apple would release a native SDK for the all new Apple Watch, something developers can get their hands on to make more useful applications than the default Apple applications.

Apple is going to provide a beta version of the SDK a week after its Worldwide Developer Conference keynote on June 8, which means that we’ll probably get more information about it during the keynote. A final version will be distributed in the fall, which is when we’ll hope to begin seeing our first native watch apps from developers.

While WatchKit applications and Glances are at the moment, limited and mostly static screens that rely entirely on the connected iPhone for processing, native third-party apps should be a bit more flexible. Apple say that native apps will be able to access the watch’s sensors (which would hopefully include the heart rate sensor, accelerometer, gyroscope, and barometer) and the Digital Crown, and that the native SDK would include more tools for game developers. Game developers are already experimenting with WatchKit, of course, but it seems that Apple’s limitations are proving challenging

What we don’t know is whether native apps will be able to function when out of range of the paired iPhone or keep data on the watch’s internal storage, something that Apple’s first-party applications support to varying degrees.

Thank you to Ars Technica for providing us with this information

Image courtesy of Ars Technica

8 Years Ago Today The iPhone Was Born

There’s a constant raging debate between tech lovers over different companies and their products. Mac or PC, iOS or Android, PlayStation or Xbox, PC or Console… the list goes on. But there are a number of seminal moments in the history of technology that most of us can agree on. Those inventions or product introductions that changed everything in their industry.

One of those events occurred 9 years ago, on January 9th 2007, when Steve Jobs stood on stage at the Moscone Center in San Francisco to introduce the iPhone. There had been smartphones before it – the BlackBerry as the biggest example. But no phone had really been ‘smart’ until that point. Sure, some phones had internet access, some had touchscreens, but none of them really put all of those things together in one compelling and highly useful device.

A smartphone today really is the appropriate miniaturisation of the functions of the PC to a handheld device, with the iPhone being the first of its kind to do that properly. It essentially became the blueprint for every smartphone following it.

Bellow you can witness the iPhone keynote itself, what has been called one of the greatest and most important product introductions in history. A presentation that definitely shows Steve Jobs at his finest.

Security Experts Call for Government Action against Cyber Threats

Alarmed by the ever rising amount of cyber attacks around the world and industry, more and more security experts see aggressive government action as the best hope to avoid a disaster.

A lot of the experts are still outraged by the extend of U.S internet-spying exposed by Edward Snowden, but they are even more concerned about enemies with the same capabilities; Sabotage, data wipes and theft of defence and trade secrets. These threats and fears were the core subject at this years Black Hat security convention.

Dan Geer held the keynote speech and went straight for national and global policy issues. He said the U.S. government should require detailed reporting on major cyber breaches, much in the same way it’s done with deadly diseases. Critical industries such as banks should be stress tested to see if they can handle it.

“We’re so day-to-day that we forget we’re a piece of a bigger system, and that system is on the edge of breaking down.”, said Blackhat founder Jeff Moss

Speaking on his own behalf, Geer also called for exposing software vendors to product liability suits if they do not share their source code with customers and bugs in their programs lead to significant losses from intrusion or sabotage. “Either software houses deliver quality and back it up with product liability, or they will have to let their users protect themselves”.

In an interview after the keynote speech, Geer said that he hadn’t seen any encouraging signs from the White House or members of Congress, but the alternative would be waiting until the next major event. He added that he hoped it wouldn’t be a catastrophic event.

Chris Inglis, who retired this year as deputy director of the NSA, said “disaster could be creeping instead of sudden, as broad swaths of data become unreliable.” “Some of Geer’s ideas, including product liability, deserved broader discussion, doing nothing at all is a worse answer”.

Some said more disclosures about cyber attacks could allow insurance companies to set reasonable prices. The cost of cyber insurance varies, but $1 million in yearly protection might cost$25,000. The demand for cyber insurance has increased a lot following the high-profile data breaches such as Target or eBay, but the insurance agencies say they need more data for to calculate the rates.

With the new ideas presented by Geer and his colleagues, the government wouldn’t gain more control of the Internet itself. The root of the problem is with the ever rising number of severe flaws in software, that allow hackers to break in at will.

Geer said the United States should try to corner the market for software flaws and outspend other countries to stop the cyber arms race. The government should then work to fix the flaws instead of hoarding them for offensive attacks.

Thank you Reuters for providing us with this information.

Image courtesy of Blackhat.

Nvidia GPU Technology Conference Keynote Live Update

eTeknix are currently in San Jose at the 2014 Nvidia GPU Technology Conference with Jen Hsun Huang; Co-founder and CEO of the company. In typical Nvidia style, this event has generally opened up the pathway for the latest products from the green team including Kepler. Could today be another moment in history for Nvidia with a big announcement of the latest next-generation Maxwell cards to join the current GTX 750 Ti model that is currently in the market?

We will be updating this page as the conference goes on so please feel free to keep refreshing to get the very latest information from eTeknix while we bring coverage from the 2014 GPU Technology Conference.

10:05am: Unreal Engine 4 is shown

9:50am: Jen Hsun unveils the Titan Z

9:33am: Google Brain consists of 1000 CPU servers, 2000 CPUs, 16000 cores and used 600 kWatts of power

9:28am: Machine learning is a hot topic at GTC 2014

9:25am: Nvidia unveil Pascal introducing Unified memory, 3D memory and NVLINK

9:23am: Will call the new technology after Blaise Pascal

9:20am: The second technology to be announced is 3D Chip-on-Wafer integration to open up more bandwidth on GPU’s

9:16am: Nvidia announce NVLINK for Multi-GPU scaling

9:12am: The Ecosystem is important to Nvidia in many applications

9:10am: Jen Hsun talks through GTC as an event and what it means for the company and how it has grown in terms of supercomputing, CUDA and machine learning

9:08am PST: Jen Hsun Huang has taken to the stage to introduce GTC and its history

9:00am PST: The hall is filling up as we all eagerly await the start of the keynote